Very Narrow Aisle Training

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VNA training

Become fully licensed to operate

All our VNA training courses contain theory lessons in a classroom and practical work using the very narrow aisle truck. These courses follow the Health and Safety Commission's approved code of practice and guidance. This means you, as an employer, meet your legal obligations to make sure all VNA drivers receive adequate training.

At South Coast Forklift Training, we understand that everyone prefers a different learning style. Therefore, our courses use a variety of techniques to suit all learners. We use forklift models, videos, PowerPoint, worksheets and handouts to keep everyone interested. Each lesson is then finished with some questions to ensure all information is understood.

The theory work builds gradually allowing time to absorb the information before moving to the next stage. Practical lessons are demonstrated, then trainees are given adequate time to practise under close supervision.

Each course culminates with three stages of testing:

  • A theory test – consisting of 25 questions
  • Pre-use inspection test
  • Practical skills test involving various manoeuvres completed in a safe manner
Licensed VNA Training
Jungheinrich VNA

The very narrow aisle lift truck

Fast stock rotation

A very narrow aisle lift truck or forklift truck, often shortened to just VNA, is a modern take on the traditional forklift truck. They are exceptional at palletised stock rotation in narrow aisles.

VNA's are guided by either rails or a wire buried in the warehouse floor. This means they are able to work in aisles with only a few centimetres of clearance on either side of the truck. Extras include warehouse navigation, positioning aids and cameras. Picking orders are sent to the machine via radio data.

Their rated capacity is around 1 - 1.6 tonnes with some models able to lift more than 15 metres high.

To run a VNA truck requires huge batteries. These batteries can comfortably run for a double shift before needing to be charged. Charging is from a separate charging cabinet.

Many of these trucks have moved from traditional lead-acid batteries to lithium-ion technology. These modern batteries charge faster, require zero maintenance and do not emit harmful gases when charging.


VNA (Operator Up) Course Specifications

VNA training
Very Narrow Aisle (Operator Up) Truck

Very Narrow Aisle (Operator Up)


Operator Up

Accrediting Body:
Independent Training Standards Scheme & Register (ITSSAR)

3 : 1 : 1 (3 operators, 1 instructor, 1 machine)

Novice - 1 operator = 3 days, 2 operators = 4 days, 3 operators = 5 days
Experienced - 1 operator = 2 days, 2 operators = 2 days, 3 operators = 3 days
Safety Refresher - 1 operator = 1 day, 2 operators = 1 day, 3 operators = 1 day
Conversion - contact us

Contact us


VNA Course Breakdown

The following list is the elements that make up a novice very narrow aisle (operator up) course. For experienced operators, safety refresher and conversion courses the list would be shorter.

  • Course induction
  • The need and reasons for training and statutory requirements (HASAWA 1974 etc.)
  • Introduction to equipment/control familiarisation/principles of operation
  • Identification/use/adjustment of attachments in pre-determined positions including forks
  • Recommended mount and dismount
  • Introduction to motive, steering controls and practice
  • Basic steering exercises – simple courses
  • Advanced steering exercises – figure of 8/chicane/90° approaches
  • Battery charging procedures/maintenance
  • Operator safety code and relevant handout
  • Daily pre-use inspections
  • Engineering principles/rated capacity/stability
  • Simple hydraulics (theory)
  • Introduction to hydraulic controls, handling empty pallets low-level
  • Load types/handling and weight assessment
  • Stacking/de-stacking at low, medium and high levels on industrial racking*
  • Stacking/de-stacking at low, medium and high levels bulk stacks*
  • Stacking/de-stacking at low, medium and high levels cup post pallets*
  • Manoeuvring with loads/ramps and inclines/handling awkward loads*
  • Relevant safety film
  • Vehicle loading and unloading (theory)*
  • Vehicle loading and unloading (practical)*
  • Multi-choice theory test
  • Pre-use inspection test
  • Practical skills test

* To be covered where relevant to operation or facilities permit


From in-depth beginners to safety refresher courses

VNA Refresher Training

Accredited very narrow aisle truck training

All courses are ITSSAR accredited and therefore recognised throughtout your industry.

Novice Operator Forklift Training
Novice VNA training

For trainees with little or no previous experience operating a VNA truck.

Experienced Operator Forklift Training
Experienced VNA training

Where candidates have relevant, recent experience but, have not received any kind of approved training.

Safety Refresher Forklift Training
VNA refresher training

Periodic VNA refresher training is for experienced operators who hold an accredited certificate.

Conversion Forklift Training
VNA conversion training

Where operators already hold a lift truck certificate on a similar machine and wish to qualify on a VNA (operator up) truck.

Delivering the best for your buisiness

Our courses are designed to achieve results

On-site VNA truck courses

Every VNA course we deliver is carried out on our customer’s premises. This gives trainees the advantage of being trained and tested on a machine that is already known to them. Therefore, eliminating the need for them to re-learn on another truck after initial training. On successful completion of this very narrow aisle course, operators will know how to use these machines safely and efficiently.

We are happy to offer bespoke training programmes to meet your individual business requirements. We will always work around your needs and environment, to cause minimal disruption.

On-Site Forklift Courses
Facilities Required

Facilities required

Firstly, and most importantly, to carry out your forklift training, we will need the use of your very narrow aisle (operator up) truck. Also, an area where we will not be disturbed, with ample space to carry out basic manoeuvres and testing. Pallets and realistic loads appropriate to your business are useful - the instructor will bring a selection of traffic cones. For the theory lessons, we need sufficient space for the instructor and the trainees to work. A small office with a table, chairs and power will suffice.

All forklift operators are required to wear safety boots and any other personal protective equipment as per the company's internal risk assessments. We supply hi-visibility vests.

If unsure about any of the above, contact us to discuss.

VNA licence certificates

On completion of this very narrow aisle training, drivers are fully licensed to operate this category of truck. The qualification is nationally recognised and accepted throughout the industry.

They will also receive the following:

  • An A4 ITSSAR approved VNA certificate of basic training*
  • A plastic photo identification card*
  • A written assessment of strengths and weaknesses*

Additionally, operators are entered or edited onto ITSSAR’s TOPS (Trained Operator Passport Scheme) database for future reference.

*There is no additional charge for these

Forklift Licence Certificate
Aftercare from the best in the business!

Five-star aftercare

Our service doesn't end with your training. At South Coast Forklift Training, we pride ourselves on our aftercare. It is what sets us apart from the competition and one of the many reasons our clients return to us. If you need us we are always here to answer any questions and offer advice.

In addition to this, after completing our training courses, clients receive:

  • Advance warning when refresher training is due
  • All relevant Health and Safety documentation
  • Refuelling/recharging poster
  • Seven-day pre-use inspection checklist
  • An authorisation to operate lift trucks form
  • Employer's training record form


Other Accredited Training Courses

Counterbalance Training

The counterbalance forklift is what most people think of when talking about forklift trucks. They are by far the most common fork trucks in use in the world today. Their versatility means they are useful both inside and outside.


Telehandler Training

No building site or farm is complete without a rough terrain, telescopic truck. With large tyres and high ground clearance, there aren't many locations they can't work in. Some come equipped with legs for increased stability.


Reach Truck Training

The reach fork truck is a common sight in most warehouses. They have great manoeuvrability and the ability to reach into warehouse racking. Usually chosen when height, rather than weight is the main purpose of use.


Professional Courses Our Customers Love

We look forward to working with you

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Professional Instruction

ITSSAR accredited courses

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Cost Effective

Premium service for less

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Fully Insured

Public liability & indemnity

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Easy Booking

Simple application process

No wonder our clients keep coming back

Feedback from our trainees

Black Quotation Marks

"Very informative and varied. Covered all aspects of the course."

PJ, West End, Southampton, Hampshire

Black Quotation Marks

"Well presented. Took time to explain and was happy we understood."

ML, Portsmouth, Hampshire

Black Quotation Marks

"Friendly and professional. Instructor was supportive and made it fun."

CD, Havant, Hampshire

How many forklift categories are there?

There are currently over 40 industrial fork truck groups. To use any of the lift trucks in these groups an operator must be trained, tested and authorised (by their employer).